RTD seeks public comment on recommended new fare structure

Today, RTD launched the public comment period for a recommended new fare structure, policies and programs intended to create a fare system that is more equitable, affordable and simple. The recommendation was developed through RTD’s fare study and equity analysis using customer and community feedback, financial and operational modeling, and an assessment of the impacts the changes would have on minority and low-income customers.

On RTD’s Fare Feedback website, the public can review the recommendations – including how the structure would affect customers based on their current use of RTD services – and submit comments. Public comment will be open through May 22.

Notable recommended changes include:

  • Full-fare customers would pay an airport fare ($10) for SkyRide and A Line trips that begin or end at Denver International Airport. All other destinations in the RTD service area would carry a standard fare ($2.75 for a 3-hour pass; $5.50 for a day pass), which combines all current Local and Regional services. Full-fare monthly pass customers would travel anywhere, including to and from the airport, for one price ($88).  
  • Adult customers using discount fares would travel to any destination, including the airport, for the discount fare price ($1.35 for a 3-hour pass; $2.70 for a day pass; $27 for a monthly pass). This includes adults 65 and older, individuals with disabilities, Medicare recipients and customers enrolled in LiVE, RTD’s income-based fare discount program. More customers would be eligible for LiVE due to higher income limits and the removal of in-district address requirements.
  • Youth ages 19 and younger would travel at no cost with the Zero Fare for Youth pilot program. Students at community colleges, technical schools or other colleges and universities not participating in CollegePass would gain access to a SemesterPass ($70 per month).
  • For the first time, income-eligible customers using paratransit services could enroll in and receive LiVE discounts on Access-a-Ride fares ($2.25 standard fare; $9.50 airport fare).
  • Employers and community-serving organizations could provide new or additional transit benefits to their employees and clients through simplified pass programs, bulk purchase discounts and a transit assistance grant program for organizations and agencies that serve populations with immediate transit needs.

“In the two-plus years I have been with the agency,” said RTD General Manager and CEO Debra A. Johnson, “I have heard time and again from customers and community stakeholders that the agency’s fares are too high and that the fare structure is too complex. Frankly, I empathize and agree with these concerns. The new recommended fare structure addresses these pain points and makes public transit more accessible to individuals throughout the region.”

The public can learn more in May by attending one of four virtual public hearings or one of two in-person open houses, which will be offered in English and Spanish with additional interpretation services or accommodations upon request. More information and event registrations are available on the Get Involved page of the Fare Feedback website. Event details are as follows:

Virtual public hearings

  • May 2 | 6 p.m. on Zoom (Spanish)
  • May 3 | 6 p.m. on Zoom (English)
  • May 16 | 10 a.m. on Zoom (Spanish)
  • May 16 | noon on Zoom (English)

In-person open houses

  • May 11 | 5-7 p.m. at the LoDo Towers’ Amenity Center, 1401 17th St., Denver (English and Spanish)
  • May 17 | 5-7 p.m. at Carla Madison Recreation Center’s rooftop, 2401 E. Colfax Ave., Denver (English and Spanish)

The final recommendation will be presented to RTD’s Board of Directors in July and, if approved, will be implemented next year.